Essay On Working Mothers Are Better Mothers
In 1990 a survey of 5,000 couples found that only 50 percent of husbands took out the garbage, 38 percent did laundry, and 14 percent ironed.
Working mothers also received less help from their children, with one important exception—working single mothers, whose children helped out at home twice as much as children in other families.
In 2004, Working Mother magazine reported that 97 percent of the companies on their list of the 100 best companies for mothers in the workforce offered compressed workweeks or job sharing opportunities.
Mothers who work part-time gain more flexibility and more time with their children, as well as time to devote to their own needs.
According to one study, the number of companies offering some type of employment flexibility to their workers rose from 51 percent in 1990 to 73 percent in 1995.
Fifty-five percent offered flex-time, while 51 percent offered part-time work.
There are signs that this "second shift" pattern may be changing. The study found that fathers who provided child care were more likely to be employed in lower-income occupations; more likely to work in service occupations (police, firefighting, maintenance, security); more likely to be military veterans; and more likely to live in the Northeast than in other parts of the United States.
In effect, they often have the equivalent of two jobs, a phenomenon expressed in the title of Arlie Hochschild's highly regarded study The Second Shift .In particular, if they quit working for a time to stay home with their children, the gap in their resumes is regarded with suspicion.One study found that the earnings of women with MBAs who took even nine months off after their children were born were still 17 percent lower 10 years later than those of employees with similar qualifications but no comparable gap in their employment record.The book reported that the husbands of working mothers shoulder, on average, only one-third of the couple's household duties.Hochschild also noted that the tasks performed most often by men, such as repairs and home maintenance chores, can often be done at their convenience, as opposed to women's duties, such as cooking, which must be done on a daily basis and at specific times, giving women less control over their schedules.(And parents traditionally place greater demands on grown daughters than on sons.) In addition, working mothers are often expected to assume most of the responsibility in family emergencies, such as the illness of a child, which periodically disrupt their already overloaded schedules.FLEX-TIME AND PART-TIME WORK Dissatisfied with the pressures and sacrifices of combining mothering with full-time work, many women have sought alternatives that allow them to relax the hectic pace of their lives but still maintain jobs and careers.With growing numbers of women confronting the competing pressures of work and home life, observers predicted that these women's needs would be accommodated by significant changes in how things were managed on both fronts: a domestic revolution in sex roles at home and a major shift toward enlightened attitudes and policies toward women in the workplace.Although there have been some changes, they have not been substantial enough to prevent many working mothers from feeling that the price for "having it all" is too high.As of the early 2000s, more mothers in the United States are working than ever before.In the mid-1990s, 58 percent of mothers with children under the age of six, and nearly 75 percent of those with children between the ages of six and 18 were part of the paid labor force.